In These Arms

Bella is your typical teenage girl, sure she has her ups and downs but that's besides the point. She is happily living in the UK with her loving parents and her big sister Amy who is more like her best friend. With good grades, plenty of friends and a boyfriend, Bella's life couldn't be more complete. She soon discovers that life is never that easy. Upon learning the death of her sister Amy who was tragically killed in a car accident, Bella's life starts spiralling out of control. Between moving countries and adjusting to a new school, Bella struggles to move forward with the loss of her sister. Her cousin Scott who has always been more of a brother is thrilled to have her living in America which is where her parents decided to relocate. He soon discovers that she is not the same bubbly and happy girl she used to be. Can he get her to open up and attempt to put her broken heart back together? Or can Scott's best friend Liam who takes a shine to Bella help her through her grievance? I


20. Chapter 20

~~Bella laid in her bed underneath the warm covers, her knees brought up slightly. She had the worst night's sleep, not that the bed was uncomfortable or anything, in fact it was probably the most comfy bed she had ever slept on. But sadly that did nothing to help her. Ever since she started having nightmares, just the thought of going to sleep frightened her. Seeing her sister die over and over again was torturing her. She didn't understand why her death was haunting her dreams, it seemed so unfair. The thing she hated the most was that she didn't know how to get rid of them, or if they would ever go away?

A sudden knock on the door cut through her thoughts.

"Bella, are you awake?" her Aunt Judy asked, peeping her head through the door.

"Yeah, I'm up," she answered, leaning up from her pillow.

"Are you hungry? I'm making pancakes."

"Starving, I'll just get dressed and be right down," she told her.

"Ok, see you in a bit," she smiled, closing the door behind her.

Bella reluctantly got out of bed and tied her hair up in a ponytail before walking towards her closet at the end of the room. She changed into a pair of black jeans and a light pink top, leaving her hair up. She walked out of her room while wrapping her black zip up hoodie around her and made her way downstairs. Scott and Liam were already seated at the counter digging into their pancakes. Liam's eyes caught hers as she entered, a small smile appearing on both their faces.

"Hey hun, help yourself before Scott finishes them all off," Judy warned her making her laugh and knowing she wasn't wrong.


Bella sat at the counter and took a couple of pancakes, drowning them in maple syrup. Perfect yum.

"Did you sleep ok?" Judy asked her, leaning against the counter.
"The bed was really comfy," she nodded with a smile.
"But you didn't sleep well?" making it sound like more of a statement.

"No, I did," she hesitated, feeling everyone's eyes on her. She looked away and stuffed her mouth full of pancakes hoping they wouldn't press on the matter.

"Well, I have to go get ready for work. You guys have a good day at school," she said cheerfully before walking out of the kitchen.

"See you later mum," Scott said. As soon as she was out of earshot he turned his head to Liam and nudged him. "So, have you made your mind up yet?"

"Just drop it man," Liam groaned, focusing on his empty plate. She frowned at them both in confusion.

"Come on! You know you want to. Tell him Bella." Scott said, making her even more confused.

"Tell him what?"

"Nothing!" Liam said quickly, his eyes burning into hers.

"To go on a date with Jennifer." Scott interrupted.

"Oh," she blinked, slightly taken back.

"She's so into you man, why not? What, you got your eyes on someone else?" Scott asked.

Bella watched as Liam eyes rested on her for a split second before he looked away, nodding his head with a slight frown on his face he said, "No, there's nobody."

It was as if her heart had been stabbed when she heard that, she knew there was never a possibility of him liking her back but, just hearing him say it out loud sort of broke her heart. She quickly gathered their empty plates and placed them in the sink before grabbing a bottle of water out of the fridge while keeping her back to them the whole time.

"Well that settles it then. Hey it's two against one, right Bella?" She was getting a tad bit annoyed with Scott as he continued to involve her, she really didn't want to have this conversation.

Bella turned around to face them both. "Right. You guys are perfect for each other," she stated, planting a fake smile across her face.

Liam looked a little taken back at that, "Then maybe I will," his eyes burning into hers once again.

"Good," she nodded, turning her eyes away from him.

"Alright, we better head off to school. Liam you riding with us?" Scott asked.

"No, I'll take my own car," he replied with a slight frown on his face.

"I just need to grab my stuff," she said, continuing to avoid Liam's gaze as she made her way back upstairs. Grabbing her school bag out of her room, she slid on her converse and tried to ignore the agonizing feeling that filled her stomach. Today was going to be a long day.


Whoever came up with the idea of counting sheep was an idiot she groaned to herself as she struggled to sleep that evening. Bella turned her head to the side catching a glimpse of the red numbers on her bedside clock, sighing in annoyance when it read 1:15 am. She could have sworn it was 1:00 am like an hour ago. Closing her eyes again, she rolled over and curled herself into a ball, trying to get comfortable. It was no use, no matter how she lay and what position she was in it didn't make any difference. Bella let out a sigh before sitting up and throwing the covers off of her. Her body would not be falling asleep anytime soon so there's no use in even trying she told herself.

With a big stretch, her feet touched the ground and the cold clung to her body instantly creating little goosebumps all over her body. She turned the lamp on that was next to her bed and wrapped her dressing gown around herself before quietly making her way downstairs. Soon, she was sitting at the kitchen counter with a spoon and her favourite tub of cookie dough ice-cream, which her Aunt Judy had bought especially for her.

Today, well yesterday technically, had been another bad day. After the whole breakfast conversation she found it hard to be around Liam, she couldn't even look at him, she knew if she did it would only break her heart even more. Luckily, she could avoid him in school, all except for that first torturous hour of Science. They didn't even speak to each other, though she could feel his eyes on her more then once. Dinner that night was exactly the same, the only time they acknowledged each other was when they asked the other to pass the salt. But after that, complete silence.

Bella took another spoonful of ice-cream before hearing a tiny creak. She turned her head around to find Liam standing in the doorway wearing a pair of sweats and a tank top that hugged every inch of his upper body. His hair was a little messier then usual which in her opinion just made him look even sexier. He cocked his head to the side slightly with an odd look on his face, the one she still wasn't able to figure out. She noticed a small grin creeping up on his face as his eyes darted towards her ice-cream. She looked down, unaware that that the big dollop of ice-cream was dripping from her spoon creating a mess on the counter. Bella groaned in annoyance as she put her spoon in the tub and walked towards one of the cupboards.

Liam chuckled as she struggled to reach for the paper towels that were out of her reach, and was about to scorn him when he suddenly appeared beside her to reach them for her,  a little too close for her liking. Bella thanked him shyly and started cleaning up the mess. She felt a little self conscious as he watched her without saying a word, it was the most quiet they had ever been around each other. Once finished she put her spoon in the sink and placed her ice-cream back in the freezer.

"I hate this."

Bella spun around and found Liam standing just inches away from her. "What?" she mumbled nervously, his stare so intense.

"I thought we moved past this?" His voice deep and husky.

"What are you talking about?"

"You know what I'm talking about. You've been avoiding me all day."

"I haven't -"

"Don't lie to me Bella," he said softly, taking a step closer towards her. She wanted to move away, anything so she didn't have to look into those irresistible eyes, but her back was trapped against the fridge cutting off her escape.

"I'm not dating Jennifer. I don't want to date Jennifer," he stated making her look away shyly.

"I don't care who you date," she responded quietly, still unable to look him in the eye.

"Is that right?" he muttered, moving even closer.

"Yes," she replied, swallowing nervously.

"So, what if I told you I lied," he said, finally gaining her attention.

"About what?"

Liam stayed silent for a while before answering and studied her face carefully like he was trying to find the answer in her. "When Scott asked me if I had my eye on someone else. What if I told you there was, someone else, that I can't stop thinking about her, that all I wanna do is hold her and.... What would you do?"

Bella could feel her heart racing a thousand times faster, her breathing seemed heavier, her whole body felt like it was going to explode with need for him. Was he talking about her she wondered, or was he just playing with her?

"Why are you doing this?"

"Doing what?" he asked, slightly confused. Embarrassment washed over her, not realizing she had said that out loud.

"Nothing," she replied, looking down shyly before continuing, "We're just friends Liam. If you really have found someone, then I would be happy for you."

She watched him as he lowered his head down and let out a big sigh, his hands running through his hair in frustration. Had she said something wrong? She didn't think she did, for all she knew he really was talking about another girl and was just teasing her, after all he's the one talking in riddles so how is she supposed to know? Liam moved his head back up to face her, his eyes full of an emotion she couldn't figure out.

He took a step forwards, their bodies so close they were almost touching. She could feel her heart beating fast as she stared into those intense brown eyes. All she wanted to do was run away, but for some reason her whole body seemed to be glued to the spot, almost like he was controlling her. But that was the effect he had on her and it was only Liam that could do that to her, nobody else.

"What if I don't want to be just friends anymore?" he said, his voice low and seductive. Her whole body felt like it was on fire, she knew she was blushing and she knew she couldn't hide it this time. She could feel his breath on her skin as he stared at her. All she wanted to do was wrap her arms around him and kiss him with everything she had, but what about tomorrow? Would things change between them? Of course they would she argued back, but whether it would be good or bad she didn't know?

Before she could register anything else she heard a door slam shut, both of them glanced towards the stairs. Thinking it was Scott she moved to the side and avoided Liam's continuous stare.

"Goodnight Liam," she mumbled quietly before leaving him alone as she quickly made her way back to her room.

What the hell just happened, she asked herself once she was under her covers, Liam's words replaying over and over again in her head. What did he mean when he said that, she continued to question herself? Did he really want to be more then friends or did he mean he just wanted to hook up? Bella pondered over that for a while until she finally fell asleep.


Bella pressed her books closer to her chest, exhaling slowly as she entered her Science class. Everyone was staring at her again probably waiting until the next rumour about her started, it's almost like her every move was being analysed,  just waiting for her to screw up. From the moment she walked in, she could feel Liam's eyes on her but she tried her best to ignore his gaze just like this morning. She didn't dare look at him as she sat herself down on the seat next to him.

Realizing how dramatic she was being she took in a deep breath and bravely glanced over at him, their eyes connecting almost immediately. He smiled at her so sweetly she couldn't help but smile back. From the corner of her eye she noticed a group of girls on the other side of the room, all giggling and whispering, their eyes directed towards Liam. She looked away feeling a knot slowly tighten in her stomach.

"So which one is it?" she asked Liam, avoiding his gaze once again.

"What?" he asked questionably. 

"The one you can't stop thinking about?" she answered him.

Bella watched as he turned his head towards the group of girls making them giggle even more. He chuckled lightly before leaning in towards her, their faces a little too close for comfort.

"What makes you think it's any of them?" he asked, a small playful grin on his face. "Trust me princess, they're nothing compared to the one I want," he added, slowly shifting back in his seat.

Bella quietly moaned in annoyance wishing he would just tell her already and quit with the whole mystery act. Then again maybe she was better off not knowing. The thought of it being her made her want to almost scream in excitement, but just knowing that to be true was impossible and she knew it.

Relief washed over her when the bell rang, quickly standing up and shoving her books into her bag.

"Bella!" Liam called after her as she started to walk out. "Bella!" he repeated spinning her round to face him. Before he could say anything Jennifer appeared beside them, bumping Bella out of the way as she stood between them.

"Liam baby," she said, her voice all seductive as she played with the front of his shirt.

"Not now Jennifer," Liam breathed out impatiently, gently moving her hands away from him. "But I wanted to know what time you were picking me up tomorrow?"

"What?" he peered down at her, looking slightly confused. "For our date of course. You didn't forget did you?" she asked, placing her hands back on his chest.

So it was her after all she thought, then why did he lie to her? Why couldn't he have just told her the truth instead of messing with her head? What was with the whole not wanting to be just friends anymore?

"Bella - " Liam started but was cut off from the school bell ringing giving her an excuse to bolt.

"Oh Bella, do me a favour and thank Scott for me, would you?" Jennifer asked her with a smile on her face. If anyone was watching they would think Jennifer was being genuinely grateful, but Bella could see past her smile, it was all in her eyes. She knew what she was doing and was working.

Bella wanted to smack that grin right off her face, but instead she sent her a fake smile of her own and left for her next class.


"Sam seriously! How many times am I going to tell this story? It doesn't get any dirtier," she informed Sam as she picked at her food.

"I'm sorry I can't help it, it's just that it's Liam! I mean the guy is beyond hot and you actually get to live with him! Do you realize how lucky you are!" she exclaimed excitedly.

"Believe me it's not luck, just pure hell."

"It doesn't have to be," Sam muttered under her breath. "Seriously. Both of you need to knock your stubborn heads together and see that you're both crazy about each other!"

"Sam you don't get it. I've already tried, I mean I kissed him remember, twice even and he still hasn't done anything! It's like one minute he's into me and then the next, he's not."

"You're worried he's only after one thing?"  That was exactly what she was worried about.  "I get that I do," Sam continued. "But if you want my honest opinion, I don't think that's what he's doing."

"I'm gonna grab a brownie, you want one?" Bella asked, no longer wanting to think about it. Sam rolled her eyes knowingly, "No I'm good."

"Ok, be right back."

Bella sighed to herself as she walked towards the canteen, she knew trying not to think about it wouldn't last long, after all Liam was all she could ever think about these days. Why do boys have to be so complicated she groaned to herself, boys say that girls are bad but in her opinion it was the other way around. Spotting the last brownie, she quickly reached out to grab it when someone's else's hand cut her off.

Bella snapped her head up to meet a guy she had never seen before. He had dark brown eyes just like Liam's only not as deep and intense. He also had fairly short blond shaggy hair, and from what she could see he was in pretty good shape. He was very attractive, of course no way near as attractive as Liam she thought.

"I'm sorry," she quickly blurted out.

"No it's ok, you have it," he insisted.

"No you can."

"I don't mind."

"Me either," she said, ignoring his persistence.

"Alright, ill tell you what," a small grin forming on his face. She watched as he reached for a knife and began cutting the brownie in half. "There, now we both get it."

"Thank you," she smiled, taking the piece of brownie from him. "You're welcome," he smiled back. "I'm Chase."

"I'm - "

"Bella, yeah I know," he said sheepishly. Of course he knew, the whole school knew. People she didn't even know knew about her. "Right, well thanks again."

"Wait, what are you doing this weekend?" he asked her.

"Why?" she asked immediately.

"I'm having a party Saturday night at my house, almost everyone will be there. You should come."

"I don't know," she said unsure, the last time she went to a party it didn't exactly end well, and who's to say this isn't just another stupid prank to humiliate her?

"Come on, it'll be fun," he said, showing off another smile.

"Can I think about it?"

"Sure, hope to see you there." Giving him one last smile she walked back to her table which was now accompanied by Scott.

"Hey cuz," Scott said as she approached their table. "Hey," she replied, sliding into her chair.

"So what was that all about?" Sam questioned casually.


"I saw you," she said, looking half amused.

"He was just inviting me to a party this Saturday."

"Who Chase?" Scott asked, trying to steal a piece of her brownie. "Scott!" she scolded him, slapping his hand away.  "And yes, he said almost everyone will be there."

"Yeah me and Liam are already going, I was gonna tell about it but I wasn't sure if you would want to go?"

"Why would you think that?"

"Just with everything that's gone on lately, I wasn't sure if you would be up for it?"

"So are you going?" Sam asked, looking hopeful.

"I don't know?" she said hesitantly. "I'll go if Sam comes with us."

"I'm so in!" she squealed excitedly. Bella giggled at Sam's eagerness, she had never known a girl to love a party as much as Sam did.

"Fine by me," Scott said, rising from their table. "Oh Bella, you're gonna have to drive home with Liam after school."

Her head snapped up immediately at that, "Why?"

"The whole team's gotta do a whole hour and a half in the gym after school and after that we might go out and catch a bite to eat."

"Oh ok," she muttered, noticing Sam trying to hold in a grin out of the corner of her eye.

"Alright, catch ya later cuz, Sam," he nodded making Sam blush.

"So you and Liam alone in his car, whatever could happen?" Sam suggested, grinning widely.

"Ha ha, nothing is going to happen."

"Sure," she replied dryly.

"So this Chase guy, is he like really popular?" Bella asked.

"With the ladies sure. He's on the football team with Scott," she explained.

"So, another player?"

"Oh yeah, just not the Dean kind. He totally had his eye on you by the way," Sam grinned.

"No he didn't!"

"I know what I saw, but don't worry we all know where your heart truly lies," she teased.

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